Firework Party?
To find out more about our Home Mission vision click here
Book of Remembrance
Remembering loved ones and NWBA family members lost during Covid-19 pandemic click here
Midweek reflections
A series of short reflections for personal or group use
Gathering to Worship
Keep in touch with our regular gathering here
Thrive
A Network for Minister's Spouses click here
Resources For Christmas
Some ideas and resources for Christmas services click here
Churches Together in Cheshire
For latest newsletter click here
Baptist Voice
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Baptist Building Fund
for information on loans for buildings developments click here

Prayers and Reflections for individuals and churches

During this time of Covid-19 lockdown, NWBA churches are working in new and creative ways to stay in touch with each other and also connect with their communities. On this page we offer a number of prayers that have been put together by a number of our churches and ministers. Many emerge from interaction with the church members as they reflect on their experience. We are particularly grateful to Carolyn Urwin, minister at Latchford Baptist church for compiling a number of these. Please feel free to use them if they are of help to you.

You can also visit our Faithspace website, which offers a number of ideas that have been developed through our café-style gatherings. this link will take you there.

When it's OK not to be OK
One of the most useful messages we need to hear at the moment is that 'it's OK not to be OK'. When speaking to others, it's easy just to say I'm fine which may be true, but we also need the space to acknowledge and support each other when things aren't fine. Produced by one of our NWBA ministers, this download offers a number of practical ways of helping us through current realities. Click here to download more

A Reflection for Pentecost for personal use or inclusion in your online service can be downloaded as a document or is also available as a video

Circling Prayers
When we struggle to find the words to pray, circling prayers can help us. They have their origins in Celtic Christian spirituality. They are simple prayers which speak of God’s protective 'circling' presence. They can help us invite God's encompassing presence into the circumstances we face and the issues we care about. We can use them to pray for ourselves and for others. Click here to download more

Why am I feeling this way?
Members of one of our churches were asked to sum up in three words how they are feeling in this strange, new coronavirus dominated world. It was a way of helping express something of the turmoil of emotions that people are experiencing just now. The prayer written using them expressed a range of feelings – bewilderment, confusion, annoyance, anxiety, fear, to name but a few. Everyone’s response was different and hardly any words were duplicated, although some were fairly similar. click to read more

The Rollercoaster
It's strange how we suddenly develop a new vocabulary as times change. How unthought-of words take on a new, ominous significance - distancing … lockdown … rollercoaster. click to read more

Prejudice and Protest
This reflection and prayer was initially compiled in the days after the death of George Floyd. However, the issues and questions raised by his death remain with us. Those following our NWBA weekly services and reflections will be aware of the emphasis on seeking the Kingdom beyond our familiar places and assumptions. This reflection may be of help in considering these issues further. Click here to download.

Labyrinth
Labyrinths consist of a single winding path to a centre. They can be a means for finding stillness and space for prayer and reflection. Their twists and turns help us connect with the changes and challenges in our lives. 'Walking' a finger labyrinth is like making a journey in a limited space and time. Follow the path in your own time and open your mind and heart to God. Follow this link for more

Resilience Calendar
Although originally produced for July 2020, this resource from actionforhappiness.org offers a way of helping people focus on their own wellbeing during this challenging times. You can find other calendars at www.actionforhappiness.org/calendars

Have to go through it
One of the most popular children's books of the last 20 years has been Michael Rosen's We're Going on a Bear Hunt. Since it was written in 1989, it has been a best seller every year, sold over 9 million copies and won numerous awards. For those of you who may have missed out on the pleasure of reading it, it is a poem telling the story of a family who go on a bear hunt ... read more

Kindness
'In a world where you can be anything, be kind.' Caroline Flack wrote on Instagram last December, only a few weeks before she died. Sadly, she is by no means the only person in the public eye to discover that not all people are kind. But thankfully, no matter how restricted many of us are at the moment, making a difference by being kind is something we can all still do. click here to read more

Consider the Dandelions
That might not be exactly what Jesus said, but it is not that different to: ‘See how the flowers of the field grow’ (Matt 6:28). Whilst the words of the Authorised Version might be stored somewhere in the back of our minds: ‘Consider the lilies of the field’, most newer translations talk about wild flowers. And dandelions are wild flowers, are they not? What does this have to do with life a few months into lockdown? click here to consider more . . .

Things that Last
At the moment there seem to be many things we thought would last a long, long time which have suddenly ended. Church services, groups and clubs, family get togethers, coffees with friends, jobs, school, shops, travel, holidays ... Everything we built the structure of our lives on, taken from under our feet or remaining under threat. When everything around us has been shaken, our resilience and ability not only to survive but also to grow and thrive, will depend on where our foundations lie. Where should our foundations really lie? Read more …

Road Ahead Closed
Carolyn Urwin, Minister at Latchford Baptist church offers a reflection which you can share with others. Road closures and diversions can be part and parcel of reality when we regularly have to travel some distance. Much depends on how we react to them. Our current experience might well be described as a 'road closure' or 'diversion'. This reflection offers some thoughts on how we might respond.

Come away by yourselves
Written in the early days of lockdown, this reflection is a reminder that lonely places can be sad places, but they can also be places where we discover God's presence in our solitude. Click here to read more.

Learning from Lockdown
I wonder whether you ever played 'Hide and Seek' as a child - the game where in the time it took to count up to 20 you had to secrete yourself in the most unfindable place in the house so you were the last to be found when the seeker came looking. Maybe you found yourself in the under-the -stairs cupboard or the back of the wardrobe or under a bed. Wherever it was, it was usually dark click here for more

What Peter did next
The first half of the Christian year is a series of festivals from Advent to Pentecost. But as they come to their conclusion we are called to stay with the story Pentecost is not the end, the last of the Christian festivals from which we take a break until we begin it all again at Christmas. Pentecost is the beginning. The story in Acts continues straight on from the end of the gospels and in our lives the story should continue too. Click here to read more

What Peter did after that
Following on from the reflection 'What Peter did Next', Carolyn Urwin reflects on how we share the story of our experiences of God at work click here to read

Arresting Circumstances
Another reflection from Carolyn that could be shared as a weekly sermon or study resource, continuing to trace the life and experience of the early Christian believers in the New Testament book of Acts. Click here to download.



'I am the true vine...Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me.[John 15:1&4]'

Loving Gardener,
tender of the vine of my life,
I thank you for your care and nurture.
In this new season,
this unexpected change of climate,
thank you for keeping me fed and watered.
Thank you for all the evidence I can see around me
of your presence and attention.
I thank you too for your pruning.
It has been hard and painful
to have had so many parts of my life removed.
I miss them. I grieve for them.
I feel more vulnerable without them;
limited; less substantial; less me.
And yet I can see there is now space for new growth.
I can understand that the strength these branches drew from me
can now be used for new things.
I can notice the fruit you are forming
and devote my energy into helping it flourish,
new parts of me not there before,
which can be ultimately used to feed and nourish others
and generate new life elsewhere.
And so I praise you for your faithful, unending love,
I pray for your continued protection and provision
and I ask that I may so live in the love of Christ and his love live in me
that the fruit of this season might last forever.

A reflection from Easter Day
Lord Jesus,
today I stand in a garden of shadows
a place of tombs
weeping at the loss
of all that was
togetherness
touch
mirth.

May I sense you
standing by my side,
may I hear your voice
speaking my name,
may your words
fill me with hope.

A Prayer for those who are struggling
When the pain of loss is agonising
When the sorrow of loss is harrowing
When the frustration of loss is unending
When the loneliness of loss is devastating
When the fear of loss is overwhelming
When the desperation of loss is mounting
May you remember that God is with you
and that God alone is enough.

A prayer for a struggling friend
Lord, I am weary, may I be renewed.
Lord, I am worn, may I be refreshed.
Lord, I am broken, may I be restored.
May your peace guard my heart and mind.
Fix my thoughts on what is true.
Hold me in your perfect peace
as today I trust in you.
(Phil 4:7-8 and Isaiah 26:3)